Friday, November 02, 2007

Who The Hell Am I?

Identity Theft. Over there, until it happens to you. One co-worker used a cash machine and ended up with her account emptied in Italy. Another had an enquiry about a purchase on a credit card, to find someone was cheerfully buying things with his card.

I went offline for these few days, only to find that someone has posted some mixing desks on my eBay profile, presumably by hacking the Gmail address that links to the profile. I think that was the bad security (feeble password) because when I went into that particular Gmail account all the controls displayed as little square boxes.

I thought it was corrupted so it took me a little while to figure out that someone had been reading it in a font that I don't have loaded on my PC.

So whatever alien lifeform hacked my feeble password, and then used the account to post some items on eBay, doesn't appear to have gained anything. But I don't feel certain of that. :-(

If anyone bought the item (s) how would they pay? I'd get it if they did it through PayPal and the eBay account. I don't mind receiving £13,000 in error! :-)

eBay caught it real quick, and cancelled the items, etc - and say they returned any fees deducted (!) - which must have only been in the form of an invoice, because they don't seem to have gone into PayPal to take money from my card without my agreement. (!)

Weird shit, but I think (crossing my fingers) that changing the passwords, and so on, will suffice. I don't particularly want to cancel or delete the accounts, but would happily do so...

Talk about picking pockets... Unsafe wherever you go!


The Purple Gooroo said...

Sorry to hear about your eBay debacle. The same thing happened to me about 4 years ago. Hackers stole my eBay account and started selling Eris-knows-what with my eBay account. They then tried getting into my PayPal account, so I had to shut that down (I only started one up again to donate to RAW when Rushkoff's cash appeal made the IntraWeb rounds). They then tried to get my credit card number - but luckily failed, though I cancelled the card, just to be on the safe side.

Scary stuff - definitely put me off trading on eBay for a long time.

Hope your problems get resolved without any serious losses.

Toby said...

Cheers PG!

It seems safe now (what a dangerous thing to say) so I can only hope it was an automated attack, as opposed to a personal one (maybe someone thinks I am rich, when I may well be in the bottom 10% of the people in the country). My fault for using a rather slack password, I guess...

I can say it now, as I have changed it. 'se11ing'. Made up impromptu one day, and not thought about again. Most of my passwords remain more complex.

I go away for a week...

Toby said...

It turns out they also went into my Amazon account and ordered stuff. However, my credit card details were not compromised, and they had changed the credit card details to someone in the USA, then ordered delivery to an address in China! You couldn't make this stuff up. Too many changes, and this alerted the Amazon security, who froze the account, so I found I couldn't get in.

It took me a while to spot it, because 'they' had added a filter - "anything with Amazon in the title, forward to this other email address, and do not put a copy in the Inbox, just in the Delete file." Pretty cunning. I think Amazon may have even shipped at least one of the orders, but they recommended my setting up a new account.

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